Watford put in a valiant shift against Tottenham Hotspur, but unfortunately, they were unable to put an end to Nuno Espirito Santo’s perfect start to life in North London. The Hornets had a mixture of solid and worrisome individual performances.
Daniel Bachmann: hard performance to rate. He should have undoubtedly done much better with the free-kick goal conceded and played a few balls right into Tottenham attackers. However, he also made a few point-blank saves to keep Watford in the game. Nonetheless, definitely one of his shakier performances since usurping the Club’s number one duties.
Adam Masina: third questionable (to put it lightly) performance in a row. Frequently caught out of position and beat for pace, as well as being very poor in distribution. It is only a matter of time before Danny Rose earns the starting role.
Francisco Sierralta: even though he was not necessarily at his very best, he still showed the need for him in the starting eleven. Sound with the ball at his feet and makes crosses less scary with his aerial prowess.
William Troost-Ekong: looked more comfortable paired alongside his former-Udinese teammate. Did not play those risky balls out from the back as he did against Brighton last week to lead to a goal for the Seagulls.
Craig Cathcart: continues to struggle when lined up against pace and the right-back position was sounder with Jeremy Ngakia on the pitch. Did not give Ismaila Sarr much of any attacking support. Still, it is hard to be too critical when he is being played out of position.
Peter Etebo: he shined once more in the “Will Hughes role.” Did not do much of anything wrong and was unfortunate to be shown yellow. Helped ensure the Hornets did not lose midfield control as they did against Brighton.
Juraj Kucka: his impact in the starting eleven cannot be ignored. The physicality and robustness he brought into the midfield gave the Hornets a needed edge in the heart of the pitch. He traveled well forwards on a couple of occasions to test his luck from the edge of the box, an area he is capable of scoring from. However, he tired considerably towards the end of the match.
Moussa Sissoko: provided a performance that summarizes the type of player he is: not necessarily the best on the ball, but still very physical and able to contribute to breaking up the opposition’s flow in the middle of the pitch. A rather quiet performance, but definitely a player who can play an important role this season.
Emmanuel Dennis: once more, his pace caused trouble on counterattacks. Needs to have slightly better decision-making in the final third, but his dribbling ability sometimes resembled that of Gerard Deulofeu, especially early on in the match. However, in the end, he did not manage to force a save and quieted down as the game progressed.
Ismaila Sarr: he was responsible for both of the Hornets’ attempts on target. Would have been able to cause Sergio Reguilon more problems than he did if the official booked the Spaniard for his poor challenge early on. Will perform better when a natural right-back is lined up behind him. Still, he continues to show why the Hornets will do everything they can to not sell him.
Joshua King: had a relatively quiet showing, though he did help in some intricate wide interplay. Nonetheless, will want to make more noise the next time he is on the pitch.
Jeremy Ngakia: once he settled into the match, he defended well when needed and looked, simply stated, more natural than Cathcart. Forayed forwards well on a couple of occasions.
Cucho Hernandez: did not have ample opportunities to make his mark on the match – should have been substituted on earlier. Attempted a bicycle kick which was exciting, though perhaps a header would have been more appropriate. Overall, hard to rate given limited samples.
Tom Cleverley: did what he needed to when he came on for Sissoko. Sometimes caught pressing a bit too high, though he admittedly needed to considering the Hornets were chasing the game.